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ABS Reliability and Repair Costs

georgeskgeorgesk Posts: 3
edited April 3 in Dodge
I am considering a new Neon or PT Cruiser and,
from what I have heard, would probably be well
served by getting ABS on a new car. I tend to keep
a car for 8-10 years, 120K-150K miles.

A high tech gizmo like ABS is probably pretty
costly to repair. I would like to know other folks
experiences with ABS.

Thanks.
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Comments

  • ccotenjccotenj Posts: 610
    i have owned cars with abs for 10 years now and never had a problem with the abs.

    fyi, it's really not all that high tech... it's really pretty basic... i would worry more about other parts on a american badged dc product before i'd worry about the abs failing...

    good luck.

    -Chris
  • georgeskgeorgesk Posts: 3
    Thanks, Chris. I was wondering about the long term reliability. Has you ABS experience been with newer cars or with vehicles on the far side of 5 or 6 years old?

    Also, do you actually see a material benefit to the option?

    Thanks for your interest

    GSK
  • locke2clocke2c Posts: 5,038
    ABS doesn't add much cost to a car because the ABS computer probably will not fail. I'm no mechanic but I've never had one fail, nor have I had any acquaintences that have. What fails, and usually only after a collision, is the speed sensor itself. Price varies by brand, but let me put it this way... if it's a collision then it won't be a significant portion of the repair bill.

    In short, enjoy your ABS worry free.

    -Colin
  • racer_x_9racer_x_9 Posts: 91
    I HAD a 90 Cutlass Supreme International with ABS (the first year it was offered). Well, the powermaster went bad with abt 90,000 miles on the car. The Powermaster is the master cylinder in this system and works with normal breaking as well as ABS.

    The part alone, no labor, was $1900. Not a typo, almost 2 grand.

    Since it was the first year offered and was an option not a lot to be found in a bone yard.

    Besides this I really liked the car and was sad to let it go. It was otherwise in good shape and sold it to someone else who was rebuilding a cutlass for $950.

    Hopefully, they have gotten better in the last 10 years.

    ABS was standard on my new Intrigue, so I got a 100,000 mile extended warrenty just in case this time.
  • ccotenjccotenj Posts: 610
    current car is 5 years old. last car was 5 years old, truck is 2, car before the truck was 6. no problems with any of them.

    the answer to "is there a material benefit" is an unconditional "YES". it helps you stop better. there's no doubt about it. anyone who tells you they can stop better with non-abs (except under VERY unusual circumstances) is full of it.

    don't worry about it breaking. unfortunately (as i pointed out before), you'll probably have to worry about other parts on your car breaking long before this decides to.

    good luck.

    -Chris
  • btroybtroy Posts: 92
    It is very unusual to have problems with ABS. "Racer X 9" had a problem with his braking system that would have occurred even if the car hadn't been equipped with ABS. It wasn't related to ABS. Granted, it is generally expensive to repair ABS, but you don't really have to repair it to retain normal brake function. These are typically extremely reliable systems. My car is at 107,000 miles and ABS is working great.

    More importantly, they are very effective at keeping your car in control when the situation would normally be out of hand. It is absolutely a real benefit to safety. Think about it this way: if it prevents even one accident, it will pay for its self many times over including any unlikely repair bill. Besides, it is easier and cheaper to fix a broken car than a broken skull.

    Also, there will be a time not too many years from now when a car without ABS would be as unlikely and unthinkable as a car without seat belts. That will be about the time you will be trying to resell your next car and no one will even look at it without ABS. Remember 10 years ago when power windows and locks were considered a luxury option or 20 years ago when A/C was considered optional? How would you like to try reselling a car without those features today?
  • georgeskgeorgesk Posts: 3
    Thanks to all who have posted here. I have, in fact, bought a Volvo V40 with ABS. If it bails me out sometime, great.

    Now all I have to do is sell the Plymouth Accliam with not only no ABS or AC, but a stick to boot!
  • ccotenjccotenj Posts: 610
    besides the lack of abs, ac, and it being a stick, it has the even greater disadvantage of being a plymouth!!! :)

    good luck...

    -Chris
  • buickman2buickman2 Posts: 6
    ABS went out on my 93 Le Sabre at about 40,000 miles.Cost to repair it was very high. Still drive it without ABS, just the regular system, never had a problem with stopping.Now have 100,000 on the old beast.
  • papa4papa4 Posts: 2
    I have a 1991 Jaguar XJ6 with 60K miles and an ABS light which just came on. I had the front brakes (rotors, pads, etc.) replaced at a local brake shop (good materials) although I was aware that may not fix the problem (I knew they needed replacing anyway). Now the light comes on only some of the time. Anyone have an idea what the problem may be without visiting the local Jaguar dealer--which I will not do because they are totally dishonest.? Thanks
  • cc15cc15 Posts: 5
    Mine is a new Honda civic I got last week. Every
    time after I started the car, drove reversely and
    then forward, it made a rubbing noise, very short.
    The saleman told me that it was because the
    Anti-brake system. Is it true?

    One of my friend has a Honda SUV, which also has
    ABS. But hers doesn't make any noise.

    The dealer tried to cheat on me when I went to
    pick up my car by adding a few hundred dollars to
    my financing paper. They gave me the seller's copy
    instead of the buyer's copy. When I went back to
    talk to them, I found they didn't even give me the
    sale's order. This is the first time I went to buy
    a car myself. They didn't explain any thing, just
    asked me to sign all the papers and sent me out in
    about 6 or 7 minutes. The way they treated me made
    me feel something wasn't right. Right now I'm not
    sure whether they told me the truth about the ABS
    thing. I don't trust them any more.
  • spokanespokane Posts: 514
    A very minor brake "clunk" noise which occurs during a slow forward-braking action that follows reverse-braking may be normal in many cars. It's the sound of the brakepad(s) shifting very slightly as the brake rotor repositions the pads within the caliper. However, this noise is minor and very brief. Any other noise is not normal and it is suggested you insist that it be corrected. It is possible but unlikely the problem is related to the ABS. Good luck.
  • Anyone out there with a camry? I just purchased the car 4 mos ago, and living in NYC with construction everywhere puts much wear and tear on your car! Any how I hit this big a s s construction whole in the street and ever since my abs light goes on for about 3 seconds during ignition in addition my back left tire makes this squeaking noise (side that hit the contruction hole). Can someone please tell me what the heck is going on with my car! I was told that I need 2 abs sensors on my back tires! Is that the problem and how much do sensors costs?
  • Hi,
    I'm doing a full brake job on a 1990 Pontiac 6000
    SE with V6, Antilock Brake System (ABS) and All Wheel Drive (AWD). Initial problem was ABS light on all the time for over a year according to my son the driver/owner, however car stopped OK. Recently the brake pedal would go to the floor and car would not stop. Found that left front caliper was blown and fluid was squirting all over the place and caliper would not operate at all.
    Disconnected battery and followed instructions to
    drop pressure in ABS.
    Have replaced both L & R front calipers w/pads, flex hoses to calipers and L&R front Rotors. Back
    disk brakes look good. (Parts from PepBoys:
    excellent price and warranty).
    Started to bleed brakes at right rear wheel and
    cannot get any fluid to pump through to rear with
    assistant operating bleeder valve. Made sure bleeder valve was clear. Brake pedal still goes all the way to floor and Reservoir is full.
    What is going on with this system? Do I need to
    have ABS operational to bleed brakes? By the way,
    Pontiac dealer says that master cylinder will cost
    about $2000 because it includes all ABS pumps and
    valves and is not a repairable unit.

    Suggestions would be appreciated.
    Thanks,
    GASHOG
  • cc15cc15 Posts: 5
    I got this new Honda Civic 2000 Ex auto with ABS about three weeks ago. I posted a message about the noise from my car. It happens only after you first start the engine and drive forward (actually I heard it once when driving reversely). On the day I picked up the car, I went back and asked the salesman about the noise. He told me it was normal and it was from the ABS. Since I never heard it on other Honda cars with ABS, I went to the dealer's service department at downtown,and had a technician checked the noise. He told me immediately that it was a problem from the exhaust system. He also said he had never seen such a problem on a brand new car in his 21 years working as a technician. He changed a gasket, but the noise was still there. I went to the dealer's maintenance center on the same day and had another technician (who has 12 years experience)test drove it with me. This technician also told me it was the problem of the exhaust system. He changed the whole pipe (pipe B). We test drove together. The noise was gone then. But when I drove my car again a day after that, the same noise came back again. I went back to the downtown service again and asked the same technician (with 21 years experience)about the same noise, this time he told me that it was from the ABS. I'm still not sure whether it's normal or a problem from any part of the car. So I went back to the downtown service again today. The technician insisted that it was the ABS. The other person there (looks like he is a manager assistant there, with 15 years experience), told me that it was ABS. I asked him how come both technicians (one has 21 years experience, one has 12 years experience) told me it was a problem of the exhaust system and changed the gasket and pipe for it. This person said that the Civic ABS is new and a different system from other ABS,and maybe the first diagnose was wrong.

    Does anyone know anything about the Honda Civic EX ABS? Does it make any noise (it's loud enough not to be ignored)every time only after you start the engine and drive forward? Thanks.
  • markz2kmarkz2k Posts: 112
    Don't know for sure about Civic, but the Accord does it too. I have an '00 EXV6 I got in June, it also makes a buzz sound for about 1 second after starting out in Drive. (It's never done it in reverse on my car.) I have no reason to believe it's anything other than an ABS self-test. Certainly, it seems if it was an exhaust problem, it would happen more than just for 1 second after a start.
  • cc15cc15 Posts: 5
    Markz2k, have you ever had your car checked for that buzz? I was told today that the ABS on the civic is different from the ABS on Accord, and the Accords don't make that noise.

    I don't know what to think about this. I test drove my friend's newly bought 2000 Honda Civic EX (a coup, mine is 4dr) today, his doesn't have that noise. The service manager assistant said it should have that buzz sound which means the ABS starts working, and it is normal because it happens every time only after you initiate the engine and start driving forward. If it doesn't make that buzz sound, it means the ABS is not working. ????

    Is there anyway to contact Honda factory or any other Honda technical support directly, in stead of those dealers' technicians? I have a feeling that those people I talked to don't want to deal with this anymore and they don't want to admit the mistake they made for changing parts for a sound they now say is normal. They changed the pipe and the gasket when I went to them last time for the same noise. Right now they try to tell me that those repairs were for a different noise, for which I don't even know what it is! The only noise I have been asking them to fix is the one happens only after the engine starts and the car moves forward.
  • I'm looking at a 2001 Chrysler Sebring 5 speed and have been told that ABS is not available with manual transmission. The sales guy believes that if you can downshift then ABS is redundant. Seems to me that you can hit the brakes a lot faster than you can downshift and when seconds count I'd rather have the ABS. Anyone have any insight to this?
  • hengheng Posts: 411
    You are right that hitting the brakes is a lot faster for slowing a car. Down shifting only provides engine braking which is no substitute for brakes. So what does down shifting have to do with ABS? NOTHING!

    That salesman is ready to do anything to make the sale. The proof is in the lie he is feeding you. So are you going to buy a car from this idiot?
  • ccotenjccotenj Posts: 610
    actually, downshifting would cause MORE power to be delivered to the wheels, and make it even harder to control a locked brake... what abs does is keep your brakes from locking, which is what allows you to stop faster...

    salesman is full of it on this one...

    -Chris
  • alcanalcan Posts: 2,550
    Which Sebring are you looking at? The convertible and sedan are built by Chrysler. The coupe is built by Mitsubishi and has many differences (engine, transaxle, etc, etc). Let me know which car you're looking at and I'll try to provide a definitive answer as to why ABS isn't available. I could speculate and give you an opinion, but I'd rather provide you with the engineering rationale. BTW, my college has a Chrysler technician product service training division.
  • alcanalcan Posts: 2,550
    ABS is optional on the Chrysler-built Sebring convertible and sedan. Not available on the Mitsubishi-built base model LS coupe, but optional on the upscale LSi coupe. Has nothing whatsoever to do with stopping ability with manual trans. Can you say "More attractive sticker price with less equipment"?
  • ...on either my 1990 SAAB 9000 S or 1993 SAAB 9000 CS Turbo gave no trouble at all, and both were unusual in giving very short stopping distances. Very few other ABS systems I have tested were as good. Some were so bad that the car (and driver) would have been better off without ABS. For a list of over 40 tests of ABS in various car models, start with an e-mail to kauffman@hslc.org.
  • I'm hoping someone with some knowledge can help me with my problem, mechanic, owners, etc. My husband's 94 Ford Probe GT (bought by a private seller in '96) has some serious problems. First, the paint job is bad. Clear coat has worn off in various spots. Heard about a defect in the paint a couple years ago. Has anyone heard about this and if so, know of the remedy that Ford has offered?

    Secondly, he's been having problems with the ABS brakes. He'd be sitting said the ABS would kick in and he would start to drift. He took it to the dealer this past Wednesday and they told him they'd never had this problem before. After 1.5 days of trying to figure what was wrong, they told him that the diagnostic testing showed that all four sensors were "bad" and that this was so rare because they had never heard of this happening. However, after further evaluation, they came to the conclusion that the right rear sensor was the only sensor that was bad and would have to be replaced. This would run about $500 plus labor. To make a long story short, he had some brake work done, pads, new boot, total came to $2,000. He was also told the two oxygen sensors needed to be replaced at $800 and if he didnt have them replaced, he would not pass an emissions inspection. We elected to pass on this repair at the time.

    My husband felt he had no choice but to have the sensor repaired. Lo and behold, we go to pick it up today and they told us that after they repaired the right rear sensor and test driving it, that a code 13 came up meaning the the left rear sensor needed to be replaced in order for the ABS brakes to work. Another $500. BUT, they told us, they couldn't guarantee if they replaced the left one that the front ones would work. It would be repairing one at a time at substantial cost just to make sure the ABS brakes would work. It basically sounds like the ABS would work only if all four were replaced.

    Our problem is, aside from the cost, we were never told this information. We were told it was just the rear right sensor, period. Had we known about the potential other problem, we would have elected not to have the car repaired. We don't feel the car is worth that much to begin with. It's got 164,000 miles on it.

    The other issue is after driving it to work tonight, my husband said the brakes are worse. So we have to report this to the service dept tomorrow. We were advised to talk to the mechanic who gave us this info on Monday. I am not sure what he can do about it.

    We paid for the car by credit card. However, I feel they basically withheld vital info from us which prevented us from making an informed decision. We feel the dealer should give us a credit because we basically paid $800 for something that is not working. I am tempted to notify the credit card company and have payment on it stopped but am not sure of the ramifications. Has anyone else ever had this dilemma?

    Any suggestions or thoughts? I would be grateful for any input whatsoever. Thanks.
  • Please post about your premature ABS failures here. The number of early ABS failures and the exorbitant repair costs are RIDICULOUS!! Chrysler had (has??) a major problem with ABS and denied it all the way to the bank as it took over $2,500 from unsuspecting owners. That is called FRAUD, isn't it?? You be the judge based on owner complaints.

    My Honda Odyssey 1995 now has a failed ABS system. I have been told it will cost $1400 to fix...e.g. replace the accumulator and modulator. De ja vu....leaking brake fluid causing the pump to run constantly. Dealership says no connection to regular brakes and it is safe to drive with the ABS light glowing (but service director wouldn't recommend this necessarily!).

    I know that many makes are having this problem. Similar conditions? Similar costs? Similar rhetoric from dealerships?

    It is mighty peculiar that this system which is supposed to render a vehicle safer is in fact, creating an UNSAFE situation for drivers.

    Please REPORT to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration any and all failed ABS episodes. I believe the manufacturers of these systems KNOW the problems inherent in them as do ALL the AUTOMAKERS. PLEASE hold them accountable for the failed ABS. You should not be replacing this system at an early mileage.

    Write to the Center for Auto Safety and send your details. Encourage it to track the wealth of data on the failing ABS in all makes. It is NOT FAIR that consumers are expected to pay the high costs of these repairs. Oftentimes, the repairs are temporary, too. Are you fed up?? Speak up, if so.

    cblake@erols.com
  • We have a 2000 Chevrolet Express with 36K+ miles. Last weekend the van would shutter going down the interstate. My husband felt they were sticking. So, we took it to the dealership to be told that oil got into the break system and has killed the entire system. Being told $3,000 to fix it. This brake system has never been touched by anyone because it is so new. Any ideas as to HOW this could have occurred. We have not done anything and they are saying there is NO WAY the van's system would have allowed this. I'm not buying it. Anyone???
  • ccotenjccotenj Posts: 610
    hmmm...

    where do you get your oil changes/maintenance done? it's *possible* that when you had it in for maintenance that when they topped off your brake fluid that some oil got in the system. i can't think of any other way for it to get in there, there's no crossover between lubrication and hydraulic systems in a car that i can think of.

    personally, i would get a second opinion on it. that being said, i WOULDN'T drive it until i got it taken care of. brakes are NOT something to mess with.

    -Chris
  • ccotenjccotenj Posts: 610
    you paint with a very broad brush in your post.

    speaking from driving HUNDREDS of thousands of miles with ABS, i've NEVER had a problem with it (of course, i haven't owned a chrysler either).

    post links. back up your position with more than rhetoric. just because you actually had to spend money doing maintenance to a honda doesn't mean that the manufacturer is intentionally committing fraud.

    -Chris
  • gisomgisom Posts: 144
    I had to use my little spare tire and now my abs light stays on. I heard this might happen with the smaller tire. Is there something I should reset since I have my regular tire on now?
  • What year and type of vehicle? The ABS control module has seen a different signal frequency from the wheel speed sensor at the spacesaver wheel because it was turning faster that the other 3 wheels.
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